Disappointment turns to joy for country sports enthusiasts

Crowds at Shane's Castle
Crowds at Shane's Castle

The Irish country sports community learned earlier this year that after 10 happy and successful years at Birr, hosted by Lord and Lady Rosse, the organisers of the Irish Game and Country Fair would be seeking a new larger site without many of the restrictions and access problems of the Birr site.

Rumours were rife that the Birr Fair’s absence would denude the Midlands of this annual major local economic boost as well as the immensely popular local and tourist attraction for good.

However, it can be revealed that there will definitely be a game fair returning to the Irish Midlands on 24th and 25th August 2019, with full details to be revealed very soon.

Game Fair organiser Albert Titterington said: “Ideally, we wanted to be able to move site this year, but this was simply logistically impossible especially with the Pope and possibly the Queen planning to visit Ireland on the week before and during the traditional weekend of the fair. The fair each year is a mammoth undertaking and to organise and promote it properly against such competing media attractions was deemed to be unwise in the limited time available.

“I am delighted to say that we, together with our new partners, are making good progress with our plans for a new and very exciting 2019 event at our new midlands location.”

While interested parties must wait a short time longer for full details of the Irish Game and Country Fair 2019, the good news is that there is an added bonus this year for Irish game fair fans.

The organisers have announced a huge 40th anniversary bonus for all Irish and UK countrysports enthusiasts with their largest and most spectacular Game Fair ever at Shane’s Castle 23/24 June 2018.

Mr Titterington explained: “With no Republic of Ireland fair in 2018, Irish eyes are firmly focused on the All Ireland Game Fair to be staged at Shane’s Castle, which is planned to deliver a win, win, win situation for enthusiasts throughput Ireland.

“Our Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland fairs will amalgamate for one year only to create the largest Irish Game Fair ever and an 40th anniversary All Ireland showcase for Irish country sports.”

Countrysports has and always will be at the core of the fairs, and this anniversary event at Shane’s Castle will bring together a fantastic competition programme of events and attractions with a prize fund unmatched in Ireland plus all competitions will have special Ruby anniversary trophies to be won outright.

Summing up, Mr Titterington said: “We invite our fellow countrysports enthusiasts from all over Ireland and GB to be part of Irish fieldsports history by making this the largest gathering of hunting, shooting and fishing enthusiasts ever.

“We will have done our bit to create and promote a great programme of competitions and attractions; providing a fantastic range of huge value discounted admissions and all of the ingredients for a fabulous countrysports weekend – it’s now over to you to help make it happen.”